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Plan bid for new centre dream

PUBLISHED: 16:00 24 July 2008 | UPDATED: 07:32 01 August 2010

By TERRY REEVE

terry.reeve@archant.co.uk



ARCHITECTS have been appointed to carry out a design feasibility study for a new Bungay Community Centre.

It will envisage it being built on the old grammar school field, in conjunction with plans for a new children's play area, and still leaving informal play space there.

By TERRY REEVE

terry.reeve@archant.co.uk

ARCHITECTS have been appointed to carry out a design feasibility study for a new Bungay Community Centre.

It will envisage it being built on the old grammar school field, in conjunction with plans for a new children's play area, and still leaving informal play space there.

The boost comes thanks to a grant from the East of England Development Agency(EEDA), which has provided funding for the study.

Meanwhile discussions are in hand with Suffolk County Council to use the field at St John's Road for the project.

But funding for the two projects still has to be found. The community centre would cost an estimated £1.2m and the play area £111,000, and Foundation East is heading the bids for funding.

Martin Evans, chairman of the new community centre action group set up by the Bungay Community Council, said this week that EEDA had provided “a considerable sum” for the study, and OWL Architects at Lowestoft had been appointed to carry it out.

“They made a very impressive presentation when we interviewed architects and they specialise in computer simulations,” he said.

“Once they have completed the study we hope there can be a public meeting so people can look at it.

“It means we will have a vision to take to people to show them what it could look like.”

Mr Evans said the county council was discussing use of the old grammar school field based on a new community centre going there.

“We would like to see cohesive development of a community centre, the children's playground, green space and retaining the avenue of trees there. There is optimism that that is the way it will be,” he said.

It may be that OWL will come up with a scheme that leaves a third of the field untouched, and members of the action group will be meeting the architects shortly to discuss possibilities.

But Mr Evans said it was a major project and it could take six months to produce a scheme to show the public.

On Monday the town council saw illustrations for the new play area produced by the Bungay Youth Association. Mr Evans said the plan was superb and it was not the intention for them to be delayed by the community centre plans, but it was felt the two projects should be interlinked.

“The new community hall will be commercially managed by a professional manager,” he added.

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